Stuff and Anxiety

Let’s talk about THE STUFF in our lives today…

Maya Angelou once said, “We need much less than we think we need.”

We need much less that we think we need.

Every possession adds increased anxiety into our lives.
Let that thought sit for a moment.

How in the world does a cluttered closet add anxiety? Cluttered homes and workspaces can leave us feeling anxious, helpless, and overwhelmed. Psychology Today lists 8 reasons why this increases the anxiety in our lives…

  1. Clutter bombards our minds with excessive stimuli (visual, olfactory, tactile), causing our senses to work overtime on stimuli that aren’t necessary or important.
  2. Clutter distracts us by drawing our attention away from what our focus should be on.
  3. Clutter makes it more difficult to relax, both physically and mentally.
  4. Clutter constantly signals to our brains that our work is never done.
  5. Clutter makes us anxious because we’re never sure what it’s going to take to get through to the bottom of the pile.
  6. Clutter creates feelings of guilt (“I should be more organized”) and embarrassment, especially when others unexpectedly drop by our homes or workspaces.
  7. Clutter inhibits creativity and productivity by invading the open spaces that allow most people to think, brainstorm, and problem solve.
  8. Clutter frustrates us by preventing us from locating what we need quickly (e.g. files and paperwork lost in the “pile” or keys swallowed up by the clutter).

Slaying the chaos in our lives is more than a clean/organized home or workplace – it is about identifying and sticking with your BEST YES (you can learn more about the Best Yes here).

The BEST YES principle was first introduced to me a couple of years ago and dealt primarily with schedules – learning how to determine how best to spend your time.

But what about STUFF?

The BEST YES principle of keeping “only the best” applies to your home and workplaces as well. By stepping back and taking a hard look at our spending habits, motives for spending/collecting/living in clutter, and our relationship with stuff, we can begin the process of freeing up our mind and emotions for things that matter most to us.

And you know what is really cool about developing new habits and disciples? We become stronger in other areas of our lives – we start making wiser decisions regarding our schedules, our health, and our relationships.

Let’s put the idea into practice and take a look at your closet…

What doesn’t fit (by a lot)? Let’s face the hard truth that our bodies change over time. And did you know that by keeping items that don’t fit (by a lot) is a constant nag/false belief that we have failed in some way? I am going to encourage you to sell or give away those items. Not only will you let go of the guilt and anxiety, but you’ll also clear some space.

What don’t you love? Have an outfit that you love the IDEA of but every time you put it on you’re like eh – it doesn’t quite fit your particular shape or maybe shows a little too much cleavage. Let it go. Wear what you love and what feels good.

Lack of focus? Shoes, shoes, shoes – for a long time this was my thing. I had a lot of shoes – and don’t get me wrong – I loved most of them. But one, I got lazy on storage and two, really, I didn’t need all those shoes. But I didn’t just wake up one morning and decide to clean out the shoes. Instead, I was forced to make a change due to a foot injury. But sometimes we need a catalyst to motivate us to change – an injury, something missing, a move, a finally had enough epiphany.

Stuff and Anxiety

It’s all about a lifestyle

So sometimes, we have a lot of something – it happens. I encourage you to have organizational pieces in place to store and allow you to see what you have. After the big clean out, I had additional shelves installed in my shoe shelf to accommodate several pairs.

These are just a couple of ideas to get you started…and know that getting organized is not a one-time event…it’s a process and lifestyle.

Not even sure where to begin? I’m here to help slay that chaos.

The legal stuff – I’ll never write nor promote a product I don’t believe in…with that said, this post could contain affiliate links, which means that if you click on one of the product links, I’ll receive a small commission at no extra cost to you – these small commissions simply help me finance this blog.  Thanks for being here.

Donna Matthews

Donna is a passionate soul eager to help others clear the chaos from their minds, souls, and homes with keep it simple, real life, productivity and organizational solutions.